CMT revealed it will honor American Idol alums Gabby Barrett and Kane Brown along with Chris Stapleton, Kelsea Ballerini and Luke Combs as the premier country artists celebrated at CMT Artists of the Year special, live from Nashville’s Schermerhorn Symphony Center on Wednesday, October 13 at 9p/8c.
These five “Artists of the Year” collectively dominated the last 12 months in country music, leading across all CMT platforms, scoring chart-topping albums and singles, while simultaneously finding creative ways to connect with fans and meet the personal and professional challenges posed by the pandemic.
Margaret Comeaux, Vice President, Production, CMT notes: “’We are honored to recognize these five incredible artists who have entertained and inspired millions through their music this past year. We look forward to returning to the Schermerhorn with a live show as we celebrate the accomplishments of Chris, Kane, Kelsea, Gabby and Luke.”
The 90-minute special will return to its original format after adapting last year to honor some of the most vital and inspirational Americans on the frontlines of the pandemic.
This year, some of music’s biggest stars will celebrate Stapleton, Brown, Ballerini, Barrett and Combs with never-before-seen performances and collaborations, and congratulatory moments. Musical pairings, special guests, additional honorees, performers and presenters will be announced in the coming weeks.
CMT Artist of the Year has honored American Idol season 4 winner Carrie Underwood five times times. In addition, Idol alums Adam Lambert and Phillip Phillips have performed on the special, as have The Voice’s Cassadee Pope and X Factor UK’s Leona Lewis.
Check out the official promo below.